Dallas ACE Leos Star In Thanksgiving Service

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Hats are off to the Dallas Ace LEO Club!

Formed less than a month before Thanksgiving, the LEOs wasted no time in getting organized and showing their exemplary dedication to community service. The group pulled together and volunteered during the Thanksgiving Holidays to help the Salvation Army.

It started on Tuesday, Novemeber 21, when the LEOs volunteered at the Carl P. Collins Social Services Center. They helped prepare and serve meals to homeless men, women and children. The161,000 square foot center, which houses up to 600 people per night, is the largest multi-use facility in The Salvation Army world. Every year, thousands of people find the spiritual and practical help they need to change their lives at The Salvation Army Carr P. Collins Social Service Center. Nowhere else in Dallas will people find so many resources under one roof, and that evening, the Dallas Ace Leos served graciously.

“This volunteer experience has truly enlightened me about situations outside of our perfect society. We have heard of people living poverty and struggling, but it isn’t until you come face to face with them that you realize how devastating their situation is. These volunteer opportunities, with the Leo Club for the Salvation Army, have really taught me to always appreciate everything I have and all of the people who love me. They have also taught me that I should help out in the community whenever possible because not everyone is as fortunate as we are,” said Michelle Shibu, one of the LEO volunteers.

On Wednesday, the scene shifted to Northpark Mall, where the LEOs joined with representatives of the Salvation Army and took part in the holiday Red Kettle Campaign. In 1891, Salvation Army Captain Joseph McFee was distraught because so many poor individuals in San Francisco were going hungry. During the holiday season, he resolved to provide a free Christmas dinner for the destitute and poverty-stricken. He only had one major hurdle to overcome — funding the project. As he pondered the issue, his thoughts drifted back to his sailor days in Liverpool, England. He remembered how at Stage Landing, where the boats came in, there was a large, iron kettle called “Simpson’s Pot” into which passers-by tossed a coin or two to help the poor. Captain McFee placed a similar pot at the Oakland Ferry Landing at the foot of Market Street. Beside the pot, he placed a sign that read, “Keep the Pot Boiling.” He soon had the money to see that the needy people were properly fed at Christmas. Thus began an holiday tradition and charitable endeavor that has lasted over 125 years!

“The past few days of volunteering have been eyeopeners for me. Taking the trip to the Salvation Army Homeless Shelter was a great way for me to understand how privileged I am. Being able to see children and families who were struggling to get a glass of milk really changed me. I now understand that wasting a piece of bread is like wasting a meal for a family in a homeless shelter,” related Anna Leo who participated in the events.

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